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Hainan delegation tours Phuket

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET CITY: Representatives from the Chinese province of Hainan paid a visit to Phuket as part of a three-day study tour examining tourism management and development strategies.

The Hainanese delegation held talks with Phuket Governor Wichai Phraisa-ngop, Vice Governor Smith Palawatwichai and other officials at Provincial Hall yesterday afternoon.

It was the final day of their three-day stay in Phuket, which included tours of the Laguna Phuket resort complex and the Phuket FantaSea cultural theme park.

Hainan, the smallest Chinese province, comprises some two hundred islands. The vast majority of residents stay on the main island of Hainan Dao.

The delegation included Hainan Vice Governor Jiang Sixian, Hainan Tourism Development Commission Division Director Zhou Ping and Foreign Affairs Office Director Gen Wu Shicun.

Yesterday’s meeting began with a Chinese-language video presentation extolling the tourism opportunities and cultural background of Phuket and surrounding provinces.

Before beginning talks, Mr Jiang officially congratulated Gov Wichai on his being appointed as governor of Phuket.

Mr Jiang then invited a delegation to visit Hainan on March 20 to 22 next year, when the island will host a tourism promotion event.

Official visits between leaders of the two islands date back to 2002, when then-Hainan Governor Wang Xiaofeng led a delegation to meet then Phuket Governor Pongpayome Vasaputi, who is now Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior.

Hainan has a rapidly expanding tourism industry, with the vast majority of visitors being mainland Chinese.

“The numbers are increasing annually. We already have two airports, but it is not enough to meet demand so we are planning to build another,” Mr Jiang said.

Noting that Hainan has 70 times the land area and 25 times the [official] population of Phuket, Mr Jiang said he wanted Phuket business people to be aware of the investment opportunities Hainan has to offer.

Gov Wichai said he would be happy to attend next year’s event – if he is somehow still assigned to Phuket.

That seems unlikely, as he must take mandatory retirement from the civil service when he reaches his 60th birthday in mid-March, 2010.

Gov Wichai told reporters the Hainanese delegation ‘learned a lot from us’.

The possibility of sending a delegation to attend the March event would be discussed with the TAT and Phuket Chamber of Commerce.

In addition to being island resort destinations, Phuket also has cultural ties with Hainan.

A considerable portion of Phuket’s ethnic Chinese can trace their roots back to the island, which is pronounced ‘Hailum’ in Thailand.

The Hainanese Shrine in Phuket City is one of the few Chinese shrines on the island that does not take part in the annual Vegetarian Festival.

Phuket Hainan Association President Chaovapong Mekarakul, also publisher of Siangtai Daily newspaper, told the Gazette Phuket and Hainan were officially linked as sister cities several years ago when then Phuket Governor Udomsak Uswarangkura signed a memorandum of understanding with his Hainanese counterpart at the time.

— Pimwara Choksakulpan & Stephen Fein

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Phuket

Phuket told to prepare “response plan” in case of second Covid-19 outbreak

Caitlin Ashworth

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Phuket told to prepare “response plan” in case of second Covid-19 outbreak | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Daily News

As Phuket awaits foreign tourists, city officials are told to prepare a “response plan” in case of a second wave of Covid-19. An official from the Ministry of Tourism and Sports held a workshop in Phuket today to discuss the risk of another outbreak as the country opens up to those on the Special Tourist Visa.

The ministry’s permanent secretary Chote Trachu says now that the country is allowing tourists (who are required to quarantine upon arrival) an infection “may somehow slip through.” He says a response plan needs to be in place in case this happens, adding that there should be corporation from the Ministry of Public Health and Ministry of Defense.

“If any tourists are found to be infected, the disease must not be allowed to spread among the people. There should be no panic, and public health officers will investigate the case. Tourist Police will track down the suspected person in an investigation with the Ministry of Public Health.”

Chote says all provinces – not just Phuket – should have a response plan. Although tourists must go through a mandatory 14 day quarantine upon arrival, Chote says there are some cases where the incubation period for Covid-19 is longer than 14 days.

“There are a variety of cases. Sometimes, the infection does not show after 14 days, or even 15 or 16 days. Each situation is different.”

Recently, a woman in Koh Samui tested positive for the coronavirus 5 days after she was released from a Samut Prakan quarantine facility. Traces of the virus were found on gym equipment the woman used at the quarantine, leading health officials to suspect she was infected before arriving to the island.

“We urge Thai people to not let their guard down. Everyone must wear masks, wash their hands and take care of personal hygiene. This will help prevent them from contracting the disease.”

SOURCE: Phuket News

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Business

Approval sought for multi-billion-baht Phuket medical hub

Maya Taylor

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Approval sought for multi-billion-baht Phuket medical hub | The Thaiger
Mai Khao beach in north Phuket - PHOTO: www.makemytrip.com

Industry officials are seeking the go-ahead for a project to transform over 140 rai of government land in Phuket into a world-leading medical hub. The project is budgeted at 3 – 4 billion baht, depending on which report you read. Kitkong Tantijaraswarodom, from the Federation of Thai Industries, believes the development of a medical and wellness hub in the sub-district of Mai Khao, north Phuket, will help revive the southern island’s battered economy. Phuket has become increasingly reliant on a steady flow of tourists over the past 2 decades.

The southern division of the FTI covers Phuket, Krabi, Phang Nga, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Trang, Patthalung, Surat Thani, Ranong, Satun, Chumphon, and Songkhla.

“The FTI will ask the government to green-light the project during the scheduled mobile cabinet meeting on the island on November 3.”

Kitkong says businesspeople in the south are anxious for the government to approve the project, which will provide both locals and foreign medical tourists with state-of-the-art medical care. The facility is expected to include long-term care, hospice and rehabilitation services, in addition to a dental hospital, sports therapy centre, and a medical training school for doctors, nurses, pharmacists and medical laboratory scientists.

The chair of the FTI’s southern chapter is also calling on officials to provide small and medium-sized businesses with additional support, in the form of access to loans, in order to deal with cash shortages.

“In the short term, the FTI wants the government to help SMEs, especially those in the tourism sector.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Phuket

Man’s body discovered hanged in a Phuket Town apartment

The Thaiger

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Man’s body discovered hanged in a Phuket Town apartment | The Thaiger

A man has been found hanged in Phuket Town apartment yesterday. Police are treating the cases as a suicide at the moment.

The man was found hanged from the apartment’s ceiling fan. His lifeless body was discovered around 11am after neighbours complained to the manager about the smell coming from the man’s room.

Police and the local Kusoldharm Foundation rescue workers attended the scene. Police later confirmed the incident happened in room on the 3rd floor of an apartment lock in Soi Phoonphol Soi 1, Talat Nuea in Phuket Town. Police said the man was 35-45 years of age and had a 29 year old girlfriend from Chumphon. He was paying 1,000 baht a month and had been renting the room for 2 months. Police estimate that the man had been dead for at least 3 days.

Police told media that the man had used, what appeared to be a dress, tied around his neck and then to the room’s roof fan. The apartment manager told police that he had been late on on his recent rent, speculating that the man may have been suffering financial hardship.

The man’s identity has not been released at this stage.

His body was taken to Vachira Hospital for an autopsy.

If you or anyone you know is in emotional distress, please contact the Samaritans of Thailand 24-hour hotline: 02 713 6791 (English), 02 713 6793 (Thai) or the Thai Mental Health Hotline at 1323 (Thai).

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